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AAPC Wireless Messaging News

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FRIDAY - JULY 17, 2009 - ISSUE NO. 368

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Paging and Wireless Messaging Home Page image Newsletter Archive image Carrier Directory image Recommended Products and Services
Reference Papers Consulting Glossary of Terms Send an e-mail to Brad Dye

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Dear Friends of Wireless Messaging,

Last year one reader suggested that I eat the rabbits that were eating my tomato crop. I haven't been able to do that. I put out traps but they won't go inside. This year I thought I wouldn't plant any tomatoes at all, but when one plant came up all by itself, I built a fence around it and added a few more to keep it company. It is very late in the season to be planting tomatoes, so we will see if I get any before the winter frost comes. My next-door neighbor has already given me some ripe tomatoes. Anyway, the fence looks nice, and instead of eating rabbits or tomatoes—I am "eating crow."

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Eating Crow
eating crow
Sometimes in my rush to get the newsletter out I make mistakes. Last week I made the following comment about a public notification system using expensive video displays:

Editor's comment: Sending alphanumeric text paging messages to an LED sign is, in my opinion, a much better way to accomplish most of these notification tasks. These cost much less to install and operate, is very fast, and many different types of display devices are available. (Like RAVENsystems.)

There are several other companies in addition to Raven Systems (who formerly advertised here) that offer products for displaying alphanumeric paging text messages on LED signs. This is a product that I promoted extensively while I was working in the Motorola Paging Division—nearly 20 years ago.

WiPath Communications (formerly Selective Communications Group) has been a loyal supporter of this newsletter — through advertising — for several years. I should have mentioned that they have Paging Controlled Moving Message LED Displays.

welcom wipath

  • Variety of sizes Indoor/outdoor
  • Integrated paging receiver

The WiPath US office is in the Atlanta area. It is managed by George Rishfeld. You can contact George by telephone at: 770-844-6218 or by e-mail — click here: left arrow

You may also want to check out their advertisement following below.

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Kudos to Jenna Richardson, vice president for product development at American Messaging Services. She makes some excellent points for Paging Technology in this month's issue of Firehouse® Magazine. A copy of the article follows. This is a good example of how we should be getting the message (about the advantages of Paging Technology) out to the people who most need to hear it.

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Now on to more news and views.

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Wireless Messaging News
  • Emergency Radio Communications
  • Wireless Messaging
  • Critical Messaging
  • Telemetry
  • Paging
  • VoIP
  • Wi-Fi
  • WiMAX
  • Location-Based Services
wireless logo medium

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This is the AAPC's weekly newsletter about Wireless Messaging. You are receiving this because you have either communicated with me in the past about a wireless topic, or your address was included in another e-mail that I received on the same subject. This is not a SPAM. If you have received this message in error, or you are not interested in these topics, please click here, then click on "send" and you will be promptly removed from the mailing list.

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iland internet sulutions This newsletter is brought to you by the generous support of our advertisers and the courtesy of iland Internet Solutions Corporation. For more information about the web-hosting services available from iland Internet Solutions Corporation, please click on their logo to the left.

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A new issue of The Wireless Messaging Newsletter gets posted on the web each week. A notification goes out by e-mail to subscribers on most Fridays around noon central US time. The notification message has a link to the actual newsletter on the Internet. That way it doesn't fill up your incoming e-mail account.

There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. Readers are a very select group of wireless industry professionals, and include the senior managers of many of the world's major Paging and Wireless Data companies. There is an even mix of operations managers, marketing people, and engineers — so I try to include items of interest to all three groups. It's all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology. I regularly get readers' comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Data communities. You are welcome to contribute your ideas and opinions. Unless otherwise requested, all correspondence addressed to me is subject to publication in the newsletter and on my web site. I am very careful to protect the anonymity of those who request it.


Editorial Opinion pieces present the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of AAPC, its publisher, or its sponsors.

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Anyone wanting to help support The Wireless Messaging Newsletter can do so by clicking on the PayPal Donate button above.

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Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, and Vic Jackson are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects. Click here  for a summary of their qualifications and experience. They collaborate on consulting assignments, and share the work according to their individual expertise and their schedules.

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The local newspaper here in Springfield, Illinois costs 75¢ a copy and it NEVER mentions paging. If you receive some benefit from this publication maybe you would like to help support it financially? A donation of $25.00 would represent approximately 50¢ a copy for one year. If you are so inclined, please click on the PayPal Donate button above. No trees were chopped down to produce this electronic newsletter.

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aapc logo American Association of Paging Carriers

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aapc header

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Welcome to our latest new member – Scott Martin of Flower City Paging!

AAPC strives to foster and enhance paging-related technologies by providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and ultimately new business opportunities for our members. We are currently working on three new initiatives to help you with your business.

  1. AAPC members discussion forum. As an AAPC member you will automatically be enrolled to participate in the discussion forum. The goal is to provide our members with the ability to easily and quickly exchange ideas and questions with one another. Once we have everything in place an email will be sent with details on how to post a question to the forum.
  2. Interactive online map to assist potential customers in locating a local AAPC paging provider. To help us populate the map correctly — please send Linda at a list of the states/areas that you provide coverage in.
  3. We are also working to develop an AAPC/EMMA members only infrastructure exchange. This online exchange will allow members to view an “inventory” of equipment that is available from other members for purchase. There will be more details on this project coming soon.

right arrow Click here to become an AAPC member.

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Thanks to our Gold Vendor!

prism paging
Prism Paging

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Thanks to our Silver Vendors!
recurrent software
Recurrent Software Solutions, Inc.
Unication USA

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Thanks to our Bronze Vendors!

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AAPC Executive Director
441 N. Crestwood Drive
Wilmington, NC 28405
Tel: 866-301-2272
AAPC Regulatory Affairs Office
Suite 250
2154 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20007-2280
Tel: 202-223-3772
Fax: 202-315-3587

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Advertiser Index

AAPC—American Association of Paging Carriers Leavitt Communications (for Zetron)
Canamex Communications Leavitt Communications (for Alphamate)
CRS—Critical Response Systems Northeast Paging
CVC Paging Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC
Daviscomms USA Preferred Wireless
Easy Solutions Prism Paging
FleetTALK Management Services Ron Mercer
GTES—Global Technical Engineering Solutions Swissphone
Hark Technologies UCOM Paging
HMCE, Inc. Unication USA
InfoRad, Inc.    United Communications Corp.
  WiPath Communications

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leavitt animation

Zetron's Paging and Remote Monitoring Solutions

leavitt zetron The Model 640 DAPT-XTRA Paging Terminal is a cost effective solution for small to medium-sized systems and private organizations offering a paging service based on bureau-type operator paging and/or direct telephone access. The 640 supports up to 1,500 users with up to 4 telephone lines. It also supports voice paging, voice prompts, talkback paging, and alphanumeric paging.

zetron Zetron's Remote Monitoring equipment provides monitoring and notification of unusual conditions and status changes. Messages are automatically transmitted over a radio or a public address system. Notification can be sent via speaker or radio announcement, telephone, cellular phone, or paging.

leavitt logo
(847) 955-0511
zetron reseller

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unication logo Unication Co., Ltd. a leader in wireless paging technologies, introduces NEW paging products.
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three colors
  • Greater SPL (louder alert audio)
  • Increased cap codes
    • Elegant=8 (32 Functional Addresses)
    • Legend=16 (64 functional Addresses)
  • 16 Alert tone Options
  • New vibrate alerting options
  • Selectable Alert per Functional Address
  • Simultaneous Vibrate+Alert feature (just like cell phones)
  • On/Off Duty—allows User to determine which Functional Addresses they want to be alerted on
  • Wide Band and Narrow Band
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  • EXTRA LOUD Alert
  • 10 Selectable Alerting Tones
  • 3 Alerting Duration Settings
  • No Physical Connections
  • Powered by 3 - AA Batteries or an AC Adapter
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unication dual frequency pager

A dual-frequency alphanumeric pager that will operate on your on-site system — giving you the advantage of very fast response — and that will automatically switch to the Carrier system providing you wide-area coverage.

One pager can now replace two.

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Unication USA 817-303-9320

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Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D. C. 20554
News Media Information 202 / 418-0500
Fax-On Demand 202 / 418-2830
TTY 202 / 418-2555
 black line This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974). black line
July 16, 2009
Jen Howard (202) 418-0506


Washington, DC — Today, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski announced four members of the senior leadership of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, who will join the other senior staff in WTB. The announcement includes: Bureau Chief Ruth Milkman, Senior Deputy Chief James Schlichting, Deputy Chief Renee Roland Crittendon, and Deputy Chief John S. Leibovitz.

“This bureau will play a pivotal role in promoting innovation, competition, job creation and investment in the wireless sector,” said Chairman Genachowski. “I am delighted to have a Wireless Telecommunications Bureau team with the expertise to help seize the opportunity for the United States to lead the world in mobile communications.”

Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, Ruth Milkman: Ms. Milkman is currently Special Counsel, leading the transition effort in the Chairman’s office. Ms. Milkman served at the Commission between 1986 and 1998 in a variety of positions, including Deputy Chief of the International and Common Carrier Bureaus, and Senior Legal Advisor to Chairman Reed Hundt, with responsibility for wireless issues and spectrum policy. Ms. Milkman also was a partner at Lawler, Metzger, Milkman & Keeney, LLC in Washington, D.C. She began her legal career as a law clerk to the Honorable J. Harvie Wilkinson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Senior Deputy Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, James Schlichting: Mr. Schlichting has been at the FCC for nearly 24 years, most recently as Deputy Chief and Acting Chief of WTB, and previously as Deputy Chief of the Office of Engineering and Technology, Deputy Chief of the Common Carrier Bureau, Chief of the Pricing Policy Division in the Common Carrier Bureau, and Chief of the Policy and Program Planning Division of the Common Carrier Bureau. Prior to joining the FCC, Mr. Schlichting practiced communications law at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering. He began his legal career as a law clerk to the Honorable Luther M. Swygert and Philip W. Tone of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Deputy Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, Renee Roland Crittendon: Ms. Crittendon has been at the FCC for eight years. She most recently served as Chief of Staff and Senior Legal Advisor in the Office of Commissioner Jonathan S. Adelstein where she was responsible for spectrum, broadband, international and public safety issues.

Before joining the Commissioner’s office in 2007, Ms. Crittendon served as Deputy Bureau Chief in the Wireline Competition Bureau. Prior to that, she was Chief of the Wireline Bureau’s Competition Policy Division. Ms. Crittendon also served as Associate Division Chief of the Mobility Division of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. Before joining the Commission, Ms. Crittendon served as Deputy Chief Counsel – Telecommunications for Prism Communication Services, Inc, and was in private practice with a Washington, D.C. law firm specializing in media, wireline and satellite issues.

Deputy Chief, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, John S. Leibovitz: Mr. Leibovitz was a staff member on the Presidential Transition Team, where he helped to coordinate the Technology, Innovation, and Government Reform working group. Prior to the transition, Mr. Leibovitz worked as an entrepreneur and strategy consultant in the telecommunications industry, with an emphasis on the wireless sector. He started his business career with McKinsey & Company, in New York. He has written about technology and communications policy in the Yale Law Journal and the Yale Journal of Law and Technology.

- FCC -


Source: FCC

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Canamex Communications

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Do you want to increase airtime revenue?

Resell PageRouter to increase traffic and sell more pagers

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  • Your customers install PageRouter in their location to send messages to your pagers from UNLIMITED network computers using a browser.
  • Databases from 10 to 10,000 users.
  • Your customers can quickly create or modify Groups based on their needs, anytime.

PageRouter with FailSafe provides dependable message delivery to your paging terminal by automatically switching between WCTP, SNPP and DIALUP TAP in case of unexpected server disconnections. Trust your internet connectivity to provide reliable paging service.


Page Alarm Messages
Send programmable canned messages when equipment or alarm relay contacts close, open or both. Program escalation, response delays and repeats. Trigger alarms from wireless buttons. Page alarm messages originated by Emergency Dispatch and CADs systems at 911, Police and Fire Departments. Extremely reliable!

Call us for Prices
We will provide a resale price that will include our online installation and product support to your customers. In our experience, when you facilitate entering messages from computers, volumes increase and customers ask for more pagers. Make money reselling PageRouter and increase your paging service revenue.

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canamex logo Canamex Communications Corporation
Providing technology to the paging industry since 1989


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Canamex Communications

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Paging & Wireless Network Planners

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R.H. (Ron) Mercer
217 First Street South
East Northport, NY 11731
ron mercer

Cell Phone: 631-786-9359

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Paging & Wireless Network Planners

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Complete Technical Services For The Communications and Electronics Industries

Design • Installation • Maintenance • Training • Engineering • Licensing • Technical Assistance

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Ira Wiesenfeld, P.E.
Consulting Engineer
Registered Professional Engineer

Tel/Fax: 972-960-9336
Cell: 214-707-7711
7711 Scotia Dr.
Dallas, TX 75248-3112

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FleetTALK Management Services

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fleet talk

Wireless Industry Management Specialist

  • Nationwide Field Service Capability
  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • Collections
  • Network Operations Center Functions
  • Two Way Radio Network Provider
  • Spectrum Sales & Acquisition


Tom Williams 973-625-7500 x102

FleetTALK Management Services
101 Roundhill Drive
Rockaway, NJ 07866

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FleetTALK Management Services

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gtes logo gtes logo

GL3000 Paging Terminals - C2000 Transmitter Controllers
GL3200 Internet Gateways - Transmitter Equipment


GTES is the only Glenayre authorized software support provider in the paging industry. With years of combined experience in Glenayre hardware and software support, GTES offers the industry the most professional support and engineering staff available.

GTES Partner Maintenance Program
Glenayre Product Sales
Software Licenses, Upgrades and Feature License Codes
New & Used Spare Parts and Repairs
Customer Phone Support and On-Site Services
Product Training


   Sales Support - Debbie Schlipman
  Phone: +1-251-445-6826
   Customer Service
  Phone: +1-800-663-5996 or +1-972-801-0590
   Website -

What happens when you don’t advertise?
















. . . Nothing !






Click here to find out how.

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Communications Challenges & Solutions

As firefighters, we have come to rely upon accurate and uninterrupted communications as a means of enhancing our safety. While many of the tools in our arsenal are used frequently, none are used as routinely — or as often — as our communications devices. While we have progressed from the days of spinning watchman's rattles or banging on locomotive rims to sound an alarm, challenges await — because, when it comes to technology, it's more important to know where your're going than it is to know where you've been. In light of this, Firehouse® Magazine posed a single question to industry insiders regarding our future in this area of critical concern. Simply put, we asked:

Q “From your industry perspective, what do you see as the greatest fire service communications challenge, and how are you and others in your particular area of expertise addressing this challenge?”

BARRY FUREY, a Firehouse® contributing editor, is director of the Raleigh-Wake Emergency Communications Center in North Carolina. During his 35-year public career, he has managed 911 centers and served as a volunteer fire officer in three other states. In 2002, Furey chaired the Association of Public-safety Communications Officials (APCO) International conference in Nashville, TN. and in 2005 he received an APCO life membership for his continued work in emergency communications.

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dirk young DIRK YOUNG is manager of National Public Safety Markets for Harris Corp.'s RF Communications Division. He joined the company in March 2007 and has more than 20 years of public safety experience, with more than 11 years of experience as a fire chief. In this capacity, he provides support for Harris' sales and marketing efforts. He also serves as the company's consultant liaison and fire industry advisor.

From my perspective, the greatest fire service communications challenge is the adoption of new and evolving technology. This goes beyond the current debate of digital versus analog, or conventional versus trunking.

Currently, radios are still largely used for voice communications only. And today's technology has grown well beyond the days of when the radio you were issued was a simple VHF or UHF radio that had a volume knob and channel selector. Radio systems, as well as the subscribers that are used on them, are more complex. While they bring added functionality to the users, they require more thought on how the new functionality will be utilized. Additionally, they require more comprehensive training to allow the user to properly utilize the equipment. Fire services train regularly on fire suppression, proper extrication skills and donning their SCBA (self-contained breathing apparatus) equipment. The same level of training must be provided for the communications equipment they use.

Conversely, the communications manufacturers must give more consideration to firefighters and how they do their jobs. The communications equipment should be simple to use so that firefighters can focus on the dangers around them and not have to worry about their radios. Communications systems can have the latest and greatest features and functions available, but if it is complicated to use and hampers them from doing their job, it will not be an effective tool.

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michael boyd MICHAEL BOYD is the president of Setcom Corp. Along with his business partner, James Roberts, Boyd has actively managed Setcom since acquiring it in 2004. Prior to acquiring Setcom, he worked in financial services for 10 years. He is formerly a v9olunteer firefighter. Founded in 1970, Setcom is a provider of headsets and intercom systems for fire apparatus.



Large, often noisy crew compartments on fire apparatus make it difficult for firefighters to communicate enroute to incidents and over time can lead to severe hearing loss. While this is not a new challenge for firefighters, it remains a persistent one as many departments still do not use headset systems on their apparatus.

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greg riddle GREG RIDDLE is second vice president of the Association of Public-safety Communications Officials (APCO) International, the oldest and largest public safety communications association. He is also a retired deputy fire chief of the Elk Grove Village, IL, Fire Department and spent 30 years in the fire service, with the last 20 years having responsibility for his department's communications. He has also served as the communications committee chair of the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association and the co-chair of the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System's Telecommunications, Communications & Dispatch Committee.

I feel the greatest current challenge for the fire service is coping with narrowbanding by the 2013 deadline. The process has been well defined by the FCC (Federal Communications Commission), but the difficulty comes in two areas: funding and logistics. The fire service has always had a reputation for using unique methods to fund their operations. This is because the majority of fire departments are volunteer operations. Narrowbanding will require some departments to replace old equipment that is not capable of being narrowbanded. If the department has narrowband-capable radios, at a minimum they will need to pay for software and hardware to retune their radios or pay for a technician to come in and do the work for them.

The more challenging component is the logistics in actually making the change to narrowband. Because the fire service has increasingly used automatic and mutual aid for dealing with routine and large-scale emergencies, narrowbanding will take a great deal of coordination between agencies. The easier transition will be on the local frequencies that are used by surrounding departments and those used for auto-aid operations.

The greatest challenge will be in coordinating the transition of frequencies that are used for mutual aid, especially those that are licensed for use in an entire region or state. These can range from mutual aid to fireground to EMS frequencies and others. It is important to develop a schedule that is well known by every department and deadlines that are capable of being met both financially and operationally by all.

In Illinois, a consortium was initiated by the Illinois chapter of APCO. This consortium was convened to include all of the public safety disciplines in the state. The intent is to make everyone aware of the deadlines and bring all the stakeholders into one arena. Hopefully, this type of planning process will make the transition as smooth as possible for all involved.

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JENNA RICHARDSON is vice president for product development for American Messaging Services and is responsible for the company's development and management of new product and service offerings and marketing strategies. Richardson has 15 years of diverse experience in the wireless industry in both sales and operations.

From what we hear in the field every day, one of the greatest communications challenges from my perspective is the pressure on the part of the fire service to move to new communication products and technologies. The risk here is that they are not completely proven with a long history of performance under many conditions and they are generally very expensive.

We at American Messaging are addressing this challenge by aggressively investing time, energy and resources into new products and applications that leverage the unique attributes of paging technology and to offer them at an affordable rate. Secondly, at every opportunity we educate to let people know why paging technology is still in existence and has been the communication method of choice for doctors, hospitals, EMS and first responders for decades. Our focus every day is to be dependable and continue to provide a robust, reliable and efficient nationwide paging network specifically for first responders.

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tim irelan TIM IRELAN is a product manager, responsible for Tiburon Inc.'s Mobile Solutions and Fire & Rescue Solutions. Irelan has nearly 15 years of experience in the public safety industry and currently is a firefighter for the Riverside County, CA, Fire Department. Tiburon is a provider of automated public safety and security solutions to meet the needs of law enforcement, fire-rescue and corrections agencies. Tiburon offers fully integrated solutions including computer-aided dispatch, records management, mobile data and communications, field reporting and mapping systems.

Today's greatest challenge in fire service communications is the disparate information systems and difficulty in sharing data between different systems and vendors. Interoperability is crucial for fire service to be able to operate effectively and efficiently, especially during emergencies when the focus is on saving lives and property, not on the data system. Fire services need to be able to share information and resources across multiple jurisdictions and agencies as well as across other disciplines and services.

From the software perspective, interoperability and the ability to integrate with multiple systems has been at the top of the priority list. As part of the baseline computer-aided dispatch (CAD) system, Tiburon offers the ability for cross-discipline communications and data sharing on demand. Tiburon also continues to build tools using NIEM (National Information Exchange Model) conformance to be able to share information across disparate systems. Interoperability must be a priority so that public service personnel can focus on mission-critical work.

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norm ruppen NORM RUPPEN is chief executive officer of Quala-Tel Enterprises, and is tasked to continuously search and bring to market the latest communication technologies that will enhance firefighter safety and efficiency. Quala-Tel offers a broad range of communication products ranging from intercom/headset solutions for emergency apparatus including wireless communications, in-helmet and hands-free radio interface communication systems, including an “intrinsically safe” line, in-vehicle touch screen mapping software, pre-incident planning software and hybrid response guide software for extrication of accident victims, electronic personnel accountability and two-way signaling system (PASS), and a variety of portable, lightweight telescoping video/audio inspection and surveillance tools.



From our industry's perspective, we at Quala-Tel believe the greatest fire service communications challenge is to provide "state-of-the-art" integrated communication solutions that are reliable, durable, intuitive, and can operate the first time all the time in dangerous and demanding environments that include high noise, extreme heat and, in some instances, explosive atmospheres. In this effort we constantly discuss "needs" with the first responders and constantly search technology worldwide in an attempt to marry the needs and the technology together.

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mark jasin MARK JASIN is the senior vice president and corporate director for Kenwood U.S.A. Corp. Communications Sector. He has spent the past 28 years of his career in the land mobile industry. The past 10 years have been with Kenwood U.S.A. Corp. in various sales management positions, with the past five years being solely focused on business management.

One of the greatest challenges for the fire suppression community is the technology requirement for funding eligibility.

Law enforcement is normally dispatched and managed over a large geographical area. Conversely, fire suppression is dispatched in a much smaller area and manage based on events at a precise location. With grant funds, fire departments can address their communications system requirements, but in many cases, funds are only eligible to procure pre-defined technologies such as P25. Both federal and state agencies that control and disburse grant funds to local departments need to rethink the technology limitations they place on radio and system purchases.

Most of the U.S. remains rural, so requiring a department to use funds for only digital radios may not be in the best interest of the agency. This especially holds true for volunteer firefighters, since many purchase radio equipment using personal funds. Seventy-five percent of the firefighters in the U.S. are volunteers, so this is a considerable issue.

Although 12.5-KHz migration is necessary, analog still works effectively in narrow-bandwidth channels for most of these applications. Kenwood ensures that our digital radio equipment is capable of operation on both new digital radio systems, as well as current analog applications. Providing radios with both technologies supports the fire suppression community by offering the analog functionality needed to manage an incident and the enhance dispatch capabilities of operation on the radio system. As their activities evolve into the radio system, the Kenwood product functionality does too.

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jay dornseif JAY DORNSEIF has 23 years in the fire service and 12 years as the advisor for the Emergency Preparedness Technology Degree program at Nash Community College in Rocky Mount, NC. He is a member of the National Academy of Emergency Dispatch (NAED) Fire Council of Standards and Fire Board of Curriculum. Dornseif is currently the fire consultant for Priority Dispatch Corp. in Salt Lake City, UT, and is a technical committee member of National Fire Protection Association (NEPA) 1221 and 1061. Priority Dispatch is a research company providing products and training for EMS, fire and law enforcement call-taking centers.

Reducing emergency vehicle collisions (EVC) is one of the greatest fire service communications challenges of the 21st century. With EVCs continuing to be the second=leading cause of line-of-duty deaths, the fire service must consider communications challenges to reduce these fatalities. There is no better place to address these challenges than the 911 dispatch center.

Here's why: From the beginning of a fire service call, the dispatch center plays a pivotal role in deciding whether a call requires an emergency or non-emergency response. In centers using a system of structured call taking, a dispatcher can determine the caller's chief complaint and by asking the caller a series of key questions, the dispatcher is able to send the most appropriate response. In all cases involving structured call taking, the level of response and factors differentiating between an emergency and non-emergency call is pre-determined by the local fire service.

In far too many cases, however, structured call taking is not the norm. Instead the dispatcher is forced to sit on the fence when a call, any call, comes in. Because of a lack of standardized protocol and local fire service direction, the dispatcher sends everything lights and siren, including to situations not requiring the highest level of response as determined by the arriving crews. A home alarm system monitored by a commercial security business is a classic example. If your center is still sending the "parade response" to non-emergency home alarm calls, your department is rolling the dice in a deadly game that annually, in the United States, accounts for over 15,000 EVCs.

The problem is certainly not unique. Fire-based 911 communications centers need dispatchers trained in the telecommunications profession. Familiarity with the fire service and geographic area they serve is important, also but tantamount is the ability to gather the information necessary for an appropriate response. Dispatchers should not have the added responsibility of figuring out what questions to ask and based on the limited information they might gather, what instructions to give the caller while at the same time sending everything in the station running lights and siren.

A call-taking protocol in place will help dispatch choose the correct chief complaints, and provide the key questions necessary for response and pre-arrival instructions, such as what the caller should do until help arrives. Most importantly, a standardized call-taking process gives local fire service the ability to accurately run emergency calls and manage resources. Your department will not only have the ability to save resources, but you will also have the potential of saving lives — the lives of your crew, drivers they encounter on the way to the emergency and the people depending on them when a true crisis occurs.

Source: Firehouse® Magazine — July 2009 issue, pp. 126-139.

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prism paging

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Prison officials seek power to jam cellphones

10:42 PM CDT on Wednesday, July 15, 2009
The Dallas Morning News

WASHINGTON — Prison officials from several states, including Texas, urged the Senate on Wednesday to let them jam cellphones, the hottest form of contraband behind bars.

Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, is leading the push for legislation that would let prisons set up electronic jammers, warning of a rash of inmates arranging drug deals and intimidating witnesses "from the comfort of their prison cell."

Advocates of jamming couched it as a way to keep up technologically with the latest trends in inmate mischief — a stopgap when X-rays and cavity searches fail.

But cellular industry officials warned that jamming could affect legitimate customers and interfere with emergency communications.

"When a person is incarcerated ... the public should feel safe from that particular criminal," Hutchison said at a 90-minute hearing of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. "That's the way it used to be before the sophisticated criminal and this sophisticated technology intervened."

Texas state Sen. John Whitmire of Houston recounted a two-week running conversation initiated last fall by a death row inmate, Richard Tabler, who had paid $2,100 to get a phone smuggled to the Polunsky Unit, sharing it with other killers, including members of violent prison gangs.

Whitmire, chairman of the Texas Senate's criminal justice committee, contacted the prison system's inspector general, John Moriarty. The inmate's mother and sister were arrested, prompting death threats from Tabler against Whitmire and his family – this time in writing, since by then the phone had been confiscated.

"It's a war," Whitmire said. "We have used pat-downs, dogs, metal detectors. ... We need this technology."

California confiscated more than 2,800 cellphones last year, double what it found the year before. The tally in Mississippi was nearly 2,000 and in federal prisons, more than 1,600.

Moriarty said Texas has budgeted $500,000 for four inspectors to ferret out cell signals at its 112 units. But the equipment is tricky, he said, and with a prison population of 156,000, it's not enough.

"This is an ongoing battle for corrections departments all across the country," he testified.

Current federal law prohibits the electronic disruption of phone calls.

The bill authored by Hutchison and Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., would order the Federal Communications Commission to set rules that let prisons set up jammers.

But wireless industry representatives warned of unintended consequences.

When jamming has been tried at prisons in India and South America, "there are stories about up to 200,000 legitimate customers whose service was disrupted. And that's the kind of thing we don't want to see happen in this country," said Steve Largent, president and chief executive of the wireless industry trade group CTIA-The Wireless Association.

Instead, he argued, states should toughen penalties for contraband in prison, tighten security, and invest in detection technology. He also argued that eavesdropping on inmates might yield more long-term benefits.

Source: The Dallas Morning News

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RIM Agrees To Pay $267 Million To Visto In Patents Case

Research In Motion to receive a perpetual and fully paid license on all Visto patents.

By W. David Gardner
July 17, 2009 10:36 AM

Research in Motion's long running patents litigation with Visto Corporation is expected to be settled during the week of July 20 with RIM paying $267.5 million to Visto, which is now called Good Technology.

The companies said they have entered into a definitive agreement to settle all outstanding patent litigation between them with RIM to receive a perpetual and fully paid license on all Visto patents.

The wireless industry has been rife with litigation over intellectual property, particularly as the industry grows rapidly. In 2006, RIM paid patent holding company NTP $612.5 million after lengthy litigation. After the NTP case was settled, RIM complained of a "patent system in obvious need of reform." In recent months, the U.S. Supreme Court and Congress have focused renewed attention on the patent system.

In the RIM-Visto case, Visto maintained that Research in Motion infringed on its technology while RIM countered that there were no new inventions in the Visto patents. Visto's software is used by several wireless carriers including Sprint Nextel, T-Mobile, and Vodafone Group Plc.

Still pending is patents litigation between RIM and Motorola in which both companies have claimed the other infringed on its patents. An earlier agreement between Research In Motion and Motorola expired earlier and the two firms weren't able to craft a new agreement

Much of the recent wireless patents litigation is centered around Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi interface

Source: InformationWeek

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BloostonLaw Telecom Update

Published by the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP

[Portions reproduced here with the firm's permission.]

   Vol. 12, No. 28 x July 15, 2009   

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Stimulus Application Preparation Requires Immediate Attention

It is apparent from the Notice of Funds Availability (NOFA) that companies interested in applying for BTOP or BIP stimulus funds must move quickly to develop the information that will make up the application that is due on August 14, 2009, and the related “due diligence” information that will have to be submitted shortly thereafter. For this reason, clients interested in submitting an application must move quickly to ensure that they obtain the necessary showings over the next month. For example, applicants must:

  • Obtain a DUNS number and CCR (CAGE) number to allow processing of their application;
  • Determine (based on the cost of the project) whether you must submit an engineer’s certification, network design, etc.;
  • Develop a detailed map of the proposed ser-vice area;
  • Identify your strategy (whether to apply for BTOP, BIP or both);
  • Research the extent and nature of existing services;
  • Develop detailed budget and projected financial statements;
  • Line up legal opinions and letters of support from public safety entities or others that may impact the scoring of your application.

A number of other steps are necessary. Blooston-Law is working with several clients to develop their applications, using the checklist we have developed to organize and expedite the application preparation process.

Clients that would like our assistance with a stimulus application should contact us ASAP. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy and Mary Sisak.

The Senate Agriculture Committee has forwarded the nomination of Jonathan Adelstein to be Administrator of the Rural Utilities Service to the full Senate.


  • NTIA’s Seifert briefs House panel on stimulus program.
  • NTIA seeks volunteers to evaluate BTOP grant proposals.
  • Spectrum inventory bills introduced in both House, Senate.
  • Missouri launching statewide broadband Internet access.

NTIA’s Seifert Briefs House Panel On Stimulus Program

In testimony before the House Subcommittee on Rural Development last week, Mark Seifert, Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of the National Telecommunications Administration (NTIA), updated the panel on the stimulus grant program to support the deployment of broadband infrastructure and promote the adoption of broadband service. Specifically, he focused on the release of the first Notice of Funds Availability (NoFA) for the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP), and the NOFA announcing the availability of funds to implement the State Broadband Data and Development Grant Program to fund state-level broadband data collection, mapping and planning projects and the development and maintenance of a national broadband map (BloostonLaw Telecom Update, July 8).

Statutory Provisions and Interagency Coordination

The Recovery Act allocates $4.7 billion to BTOP for the general purpose of accelerating the deployment and adoption of broadband services. Of that amount, at least $250 million is to be made available for programs that encourage sustainable adoption of broadband services,

and at least $200 million is to be made available for expanding public computer center capacity, including at community colleges and public libraries. The Recovery Act further provides for up to $350 million to implement the State Broadband Data Program and to develop and maintain a broadband inventory map.

As set forth in the Recovery Act, Congress designed BTOP to accelerate broadband deployment in unserved and underserved areas and to strategic community institutions that provide important public benefits. The Act also focuses on stimulating demand for broadband services. The Act specifies that the program be designed to stimulate job creation, economic growth, and demand for broadband services. Other purposes of BTOP include: improving access to and the use of broadband services by public safety agencies and providing funds for broadband education, awareness, training, access, and support to a number of institutions including schools, libraries, job-creating strategic facilities, and organizations that provide broadband outreach and assistance to vulnerable populations.

The Recovery Act specifies the key elements NTIA must consider in awarding BTOP grants. For example, in the case of broadband infrastructure grants, the Act directs NTIA to consider whether:

  • an application will increase the affordability of, and subscribership to, services to the greatest population of users in an area;
  • the application will enhance service for health care delivery, education, or children to the greatest population of users in an area;
  • an application, if approved, will not result in unjust enrichment as a result of support from another Federal program in the area;
  • the applicant is a socially or economically disadvantaged small business;
  • the application will provide the greatest broadband speed to the greatest population of users in an area.

Consistent with the statute, NTIA also aims to award grant funds to at least one project in each state.

As NTIA has worked to implement the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act’s broadband provisions, NTIA has coordinated closely with the other Federal agencies directed to lead these efforts including the Rural Utilities Service (RUS), which was appropriated $2.5 billion by the Recovery Act for broadband loans and grants, and the FCC, which recently published its Rural Broadband Strategy, and is also required to develop a national broadband plan.

BTOP Implementation

The NOFA, which NTIA and RUS released jointly on July 1, announces the availability of approximately $4 billion in program funding and describes application requirements for the first round of BTOP grants and BIP loans and grants. The collaborative approach that NTIA and RUS have taken in this NOFA will help to ensure that the agencies’ activities are complementary and integrated, taxpayer funds are best utilized, and the application process is easy to understand.

BTOP will seek to serve the highest priority needs for federal investment—particularly projects that offer the potential for economic growth and job creation, and provide benefits to education, health care, and public safety. The program will favor viable, sustainable, and scalable projects. NTIA will also favor proposals that satisfy the public-interest objectives specified in the statute and detailed in the NOFA. These projects can serve as models for future private investments once economic conditions improve.

In keeping with statutory requirements for NTIA, NTIA expects to distribute grants across geographic areas of the United States, addressing these various public purposes. NTIA will issue grant awards on a technologically neutral basis, and we expect to support projects employing a range of technologies, including fixed and mobile wireless, fiber, and satellite.

Up to $1.4 billion in BTOP funds will be available in this first grant round. The application deadline for the first round of grants is August 14, 2009. Consistent with its appropriation, BTOP is divided into three categories of projects. Under the first NOFA, the Broadband Infrastructure category will fund up to $1.2 billion in projects that deliver broadband service to unserved and underserved areas. Applications to fund broadband infrastructure projects in areas that are at least 75 percent rural are required to be submitted to RUS for consideration under BIP. If an applicant intending to serve such rural areas also chooses to have an application considered for BTOP funding, the applicant must complete the additional elements required of BTOP infrastructure applicants. NTIA may determine such applications to be meritorious and make grant awards if RUS reviews the application and determines not to fund it. All other Broadband Infrastructure applications—i.e., those projects with proposed service areas that are less than 75 percent rural—must be submitted to NTIA for consideration under BTOP. A single application portal— —will help streamline the process for grant applicants.

Within the Broadband Infrastructure category, NTIA and RUS determined that a distinction should be made in funding infrastructure projects, and they have created the broad categories of Last Mile and Middle Mile projects. Applications for Last Mile projects under BTOP must be for unserved or underserved areas and have the predominant purpose of providing broadband service to end users (and end users devices), including households, businesses, community anchor institutions, public safety entities, and critical community facilities. Applications for Middle Mile projects under BTOP also must be for un- served or underserved areas, but these projects should have an express purpose other than providing broadband service to end users and end-user devices and may include such things as interoffice transport, backhaul, Internet connectivity, or special access services.

The second BTOP grant category, Public Computer Centers, will fund projects that expand public access to broadband services and enhance broadband capacity at entities that permit the public or specific vulnerable populations, such as low-income, unemployed, aged, children, minorities, and people with disabilities to use these computer centers. In the first round, BTOP will fund up to $50 million for public computer centers.

The third BTOP grant category, Sustainable Broadband Adoption, will fund innovative projects that promote broadband demand and affordability, such as projects focused on broadband education, awareness, training, access, equipment and support, particular among vulnerable populations where broadband technology has traditionally been underutilized. In this first round, BTOP will fund up to $150 million in broadband demand projects.

BTOP Eligibility

The Recovery Act delineates those entities that are eligible to apply for BTOP funding, including the U.S. states and their subdivisions, U.S. territories and possessions, tribes, and non-profit entities. Consistent with the Recovery Act, the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information found it to be in the public interest to permit for-profit corporations and non-profit entities not otherwise encompassed in the Recovery Act that are willing to promote the goals of the Act and comply with the statutory requirements of BTOP to be eligible for a grant. By adopting this approach, the Assistant Secretary enabled a large and diverse applicant pool to participate in BTOP and to expand broadband capabilities in a technologically neutral manner.

Other eligibility factors set forth in the NOFA require that all BTOP applicants: submit a complete application and all supporting documents; demonstrate the project can be substantially completed within two years of the grant issuance date and fully completed within three years of the grant issuance date; advance one or more of BTOP’s five statutory purposes; provide matching funds of at least 20 percent toward total eligible project costs (unless a waiver petition is approved); document that the project would not be implemented during the grant period but for a federal grant; and demonstrate that the budget is reasonable.

Applicants for Broadband Infrastructure grants are also required to satisfy the following additional eligibility criteria:

  • The applicant must propose to offer “broadband” service as defined in the NoFA—i.e., two-way data transmission with advertised speeds of at least 768 kbps downstream and at least 200 kbps upstream to end users; or sufficient capacity in a middle-mile project to support “broadband” service to end users.
  • The applicant must provide information that enables NTIA to determine that the proposed project is technically feasible, including submitting a system design and project timeline certified by a professional engineer for any project requesting funds over $1 million.
  • The applicant must demonstrate the ability of the project to be sustained beyond the funding period.
  • The applicant must commit to the program’s Nondiscrimination and Interconnection Obligations—
    • 1) adherence to the FCC’s Internet Policy Statement;
    • 2) not favor some lawful Internet applications and content over others;
    • 3) describe and display any network management policies;
    • 4) connect to the public Internet and not be an entirely private closed network; and
    • 5) offer interconnection where technically feasible, including the ability to connect to the public Internet and physical interconnection for the exchange of traffic.
  • Applicants for Last Mile infrastructure projects must provide service to the entire territory of each census block included in the funded service area unless the applicant can provide a reasoned explanation as to why providing coverage for an entire census block is infeasible.

BTOP Application Process

The NOFA sets forth a two-step application review process. The goal in step one is to create a pool of viable and potentially fundable applications. After an initial screening to determine whether applications meet eligibility factors (such as application completeness) step one will consist of evaluating and scoring each BTOP application against objective criteria and not against other applications. Applications will be evaluated by at least three expert reviewers against objective criteria within four general categories:

1) project purpose,
2) project benefits,
3) project viability, and
4) project budget and sustainability. Scores will be averaged and the applications that are considered to be the most highly qualified will advance for further consideration.

The goal of step two, which NTIA considers to be the “due diligence” phase, is to fully validate the applications that advance from step one and identify the most highly qualified applications for funding. In step two, NTIA will request that applicants submit additional information as necessary to substantiate representations made in their application. The nature and scope of additional information requested will depend on the BTOP funding category in which the application was made. NTIA will review and analyze supplemental information and assign a rating, based on a five-point scale, reflecting the consistency of the application with supporting documents. Not all applications that are selected for step two will necessarily receive a grant. Grant recipients will be notified if their application has been selected for a BTOP grant. NTIA and RUS intend to announce awards beginning on or about November 7, 2009.

To assist potential applicants with their applications for both BTOP and BIP, NTIA and RUS are jointly conducting ten workshops this month throughout the country. The workshops include an overview of both BTOP and BIP and a review of the application process for funding.

The locations of the workshops are representative of rural and urban needs, as well as a diversity of regions, populations, topographies and city/metropolitan-area sizes. Two workshops were held earlier this week here in Washington DC and in Boston. Tomorrow, a workshop is scheduled in Charleston, West Virginia. In the coming weeks, workshops will be held in: Birmingham, Alabama (July 14); Memphis, Tennessee (July 15); Lonoke, Arkansas (July 16); Billings, Montana (July 17); Minneapolis, Minnesota (July 21); Albuquerque, New Mexico (July 23); and Los Angeles, California (July 24). For those unable to attend any of the workshops, NTIA will also have a webinar version of the workshops available on our website. NTIA will also post application guidance and frequently-asked-questions on issues of general applicability to assist applicants complete a successful application. For the second and third rounds of funding for BTOP and BIP, NTIA and RUS anticipate that additional workshops will be held to aid applicants.

Participation of the States in BTOP

States will play an important role in BTOP. First, the NOFA invited each State to review and prioritize applications for projects in or affecting the state. Second, through a separate NOFA released on July 1, 2009, creating the State Broadband Data Program, NTIA is encouraging all states to collect broadband data for use in the national map mandated by the Recovery Act. The State Broadband Data Program is a competitive, merit- based matching grant program to fund projects that collect comprehensive and accurate state broadband mapping data, develop state broadband maps, and provide for broadband planning. With data collected at the state level, NTIA will develop and maintain a national broadband map, a key priority of this program. As such, NTIA intends to fund high-quality projects that are designed to gather data at the address level on broadband availability, technology, speed, infrastructure, and average revenue per user across the project area.

The Recovery Act authorizes NTIA to expend up to $350 million to support state mapping and planning efforts and for the development and maintenance of a broadband inventory map. NTIA expects to make approximately $240 million available for this activity, with grant awards that range between $1.9 million and $3.8 million per state for the mapping portion of each project, and up to $500,000 for the planning portion of each project. The amount of grant awards will depend on the specifics of each project and the quality of each project as determined in NTIA’s review, as well as demographic and geographic features unique to each state.

Amendment to Halt RUS broadband loan program defeated

Lobbying efforts by the Organization for the Promotion and Advancement of Small Telecommunications Companies (OPASTCO) have helped defeat an amendment that would have halted administration of the Rural Utility Service (RUS) broadband loan program. The amendment, introduced by Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.), would have prohibited funds from being used to administer or pay the salary of personnel who administer any broad- band loans or loan guarantees on or before September 15, 2010. The bill, HR 2997, is an appropriations bill for the RUS program that passed the House last week.

NTIA Seeks Volunteers To Evaluate BTOP Grants

The National Telecommunications and Information Ad- ministration (NTIA) is soliciting volunteers to serve as panelists to evaluate grant proposals for the $4.7 billion Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP), an important part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

NTIA is accepting applications for its first round of BTOP grants from July 14, 2009, until August 14, 2009, and will conduct panel reviews through at least the end of September 2009.

Reviewer evaluations will be an important factor considered by NTIA in determining whether to award grant funding. To be considered as a reviewer, an applicant must have significant expertise and experience in at least one of the following areas: 1) the design, funding, construction, and operation of broadband networks or public computer centers; 2) broadband-related outreach, training, or education; and 3) innovative programs to increase the demand for broadband services. In addition, an applicant must agree to comply with Department of Commerce policies on conflict of interest and confidentiality.

NTIA says it is committed to ensuring that reviewers come from diverse backgrounds and areas of the United States. It asks that people “feel free” to circulate this “Call for Reviewers” to other individuals or organizations that may be sources of qualified reviewers. It is, of course, somewhat disconcerting that the BTOP applications will not be reviewed by a professional staff, and that many reviewers apparently will be entirely new to the grant review process.

If you have questions, please send them by e-mail to:

For additional information, please see

BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.


SPECTRUM INVENTORY BILLS INTRODUCED IN BOTH HOUSE, SENATE: H.R. 3125, a bill to require an inventory of radio spectrum bands managed by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the FCC has been introduced in the House. The bill is sponsored by House Energy and Committee Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), ranking Republican Joe Barton (R- Texas), Telecommunication subcommittee Chairman Rick Boucher (D-Va.), and the subcommittee's ranking Republican Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.). A companion bill has been introduced in the Senate by Sens. John Kerry (D- Mass.), and Olympia Snowe R-Maine). The Senate Commerce Committee voted unanimously to approve the measure, but it is unclear when it will see a floor vote in the Senate's packed agenda. Additionally, the Senate bill is considered a work in progress and may be modified before a floor vote. Among other things, the House version would create an inventory of each radio spectrum band of frequencies used in the United States Table of Frequency Allocations, from 225 megahertz to 10 gigahertz, that includes (A) the radio services authorized to operate in each band of frequencies; (B) the identity of each Federal or non-Federal user within each such radio service authorized to operate in each band of frequencies; (C) the total amount of spectrum, by band of frequencies, allocated to each Federal or non-Federal user (in percentage terms and in sum) and the geographic areas covered by their respective allocations; (D) the approximate number of transmitters, repeaters, end-user terminals or receivers, or other radio frequency devices authorized to operate, as appropriate to characterize the extent of use of each radio service in each band of frequencies; (E) an approximation of the extent to which each Federal or non-Federal user is using, by geography, each band of frequencies, such as the amount and percentage of time of use, number of end users, or other measures as appropriate to the particular band and radio service; (F) for non-Federal users, any commercial names under which facilities-based service is offered to the public using the spectrum of the non-Federal user, including where the spectrum is being offered via resale and under what commercial names; and (G) and contour maps, the identity of each entity offering unlicensed services, and other data. BloostonLaw contacts: Hal Mordkofsky, John Prendergast, and Cary Mitchell.

MISSOURI LAUNCHING STATEWIDE BROADBAND INTERNET ACCESS: Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon has announced the creation of a program that is expected to establish statewide broadband Internet access by 2014. The program, called MoBroadbandNow, will consist of businesses and organizations that will partner with the state to compete for funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Interested businesses had to submit an application by 2 p.m. on July 13 at the Office of Administration in Jefferson City, according to The Missourian. The program aims to create a "fiber-optic broadband backbone" that would reach even the most rural areas in Missouri. Nixon spokesman Scott Holste said the state will be looking to partner with companies that have experience in fiber optics and broadband expansion to implement the program. The Missourian re- ported that Holste said the program is somewhat modeled on what Iowa has done to provide Internet access to the state, and the governor's office spoke with former Iowa governor and current U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack on how to best implement the broadband network in Missouri. The program is also expected to have an economic impact by creating jobs in technological fields that will carry out the construction and operation of the fiber-optic network.


JULY 20: FCC FORM 497, LOW INCOME QUARTERLY REPORT. This form, the Lifeline and Link-Up Worksheet, must be submitted to the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) by all eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) that request reimbursement for participating in the low-income program. The form must be submitted by the third Monday after the end of each quarter. It is available at: BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

JULY 31: FCC FORM 507, UNIVERSAL SERVICE QUARTERLY LINE COUNT UPDATE. Line count updates are required to recalculate a carrier's per line universal service support, and is filed with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC). This information must be submitted on July 31 each year by all rate-of-return incumbent carriers, and on a quarterly basis if a competitive eligible telecommunications carrier (CETC) has initiated service in the rate-of-return incumbent carrier’s service area and reported line count data to USAC in the rate-of-return incumbent carrier’s service area, in order for the incumbent carrier to be eligible to receive Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS). This quarterly filing is due July 31 and covers lines served as of December 31, 2007. Incumbent carriers filing on a quarterly basis must also file on September 30 (for lines served as of March 31, 2008); December 30 (for lines served as of June 30, 2008), and March 31, 2009, for lines served as of September 30, 2008).. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

JULY 31: FCC FORM 525, COMPETITIVE CARRIER LINE COUNT QUARTERLY REPORT. Competitive eligible telecommunications carriers (CETCs) are eligible to receive high cost support if they serve lines in an incumbent carrier’s service area, and that incumbent carrier receives high cost support. CETCs are eligible to receive the same per-line support amount received by the incumbent carrier in whose study area the CETC serves lines. Unlike the incumbent carriers, CETCs will use FCC Form 525 to submit their line count data to the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC). This quarterly report must be filed by the last business day of March (for lines served as of September 30 of the previous year); the last business day of July (for lines served as of December 31 of the previous year); the last business day of September (for lines served as of March 31 of the current year); and the last business day of December (for lines served as of June 30 of the current year). CETCs must file the number of working loops served in the service area of an incumbent carrier, disaggregated by the incumbent carrier’s cost zones, if applicable, for High Cost Loop (HCL), Local Switching Support (LSS), Long Term Support (LTS), and Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS). ICLS will also require the loops to be reported by customer class as further described below. For Interstate Access Support (IAS), CETCs must file the number of working loops served in the service area of an incumbent carrier by Unbundled Network Element (UNE) zone and customer class. Working loops provided by CETCs in ser- vice areas of non-rural incumbents receiving High Cost Model (HCM) support must be filed by wire center or other methodology as determined by the state regulatory authority. CETCs may choose to complete FCC Form 525 and submit it to USAC, or designate an agent to file the form on its behalf. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

JULY 31: REPORT OF EXTENSION OF CREDIT TO FEDERAL CANDIDATES. This report (in letter format) must be filed by January 30 and July 31 of each year, but ONLY if the carrier extended unsecured credit to a candidate for a Federal elected office during the reporting period. BloostonLaw contacts: Hal Mordkofsky, John Prendergast, and Richard Rubino.

AUGUST 1: FTC BEGINS ENFORCEMENT OF RED FLAG RULES. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has delayed enforcement of the “Red Flag” Rules for 90 days until August 1, 2009, to give creditors and financial institutions additional time to implement identity theft programs. Under the new rules, all businesses that maintain a creditor-debtor relationship with customers, including virtually all telecommunications carriers (but other companies as well), must adopt written procedures designed to detect the relevant warning signs of identity theft, and implement an appropriate response. The Red Flag compliance program was in place as of November 1, 2008. But the FTC will not enforce the rules until August 1, 2009, meaning only that a business will not be subject to enforcement action by the FTC if it delays implementing the program until August 1. The FTC announcement does not affect other federal agencies’ enforcement of the original Nov. 1, 2008, compliance deadline for institutions subject to their oversight. Other liabilities may be incurred if a violation occurs in the meantime. The requirements are not just binding on telcos and wireless carriers that are serving the public on a common carrier basis. They also apply to any “creditor” (which includes entities that defer payment for goods or services) that has “covered accounts” (ac- counts used mostly for personal, family or household purposes). This also may affect private user clients, as well as many telecom carriers’ non-regulated affiliates and subsidiaries. BloostonLaw has prepared a Red Flag Compliance Manual to help your company achieve compliance with the Red Flag Rules. Please contact Gerry Duffy (202-828-5528) or Mary Sisak (202-828-5554) with any questions or to request the manual.

JULY 31: SECTION 43.61(a) INTERNATIONAL TELECOMMUNICATIONS TRAFFIC REPORTS. All common carriers that provided international facilities-based and facilities-resale switched and private line services, or pure switched resale services, during calendar year 2007, are required to file the report regardless of the amount of traffic they provided. Facilities-based services are provided using international transmission facilities owned in whole or in part by the carrier providing the service. Facilities-resale services are provided by a carrier utilizing international circuits leased from other reporting international carriers. International facilities-based and facilities-resale switched message telephone and private line services data must be filed on a country-by-country, region and world total basis. International switched telegraph, telex and other miscellaneous services data may be filed on a region and world total basis only. Carriers that provided international pure switched resale services for the calendar year may file world totals only. Blooston- Law contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

JULY 31: CARRIER IDENTIFICATION CODE (CIC) REPORTS DUE. Carrier Identification Code (CIC) Reports must be filed by July 31 of each year. These reports are required of all carriers who have been assigned a CIC code by NANPA. Failure to file could result in an effort by NANPA to reclaim it, although according to the Guidelines this process is initiated with a letter from NANPA regarding the apparent non-use of the CIC code. The assignee can then respond with an explanation. (Guidelines Section 6.2).

The CIC Reporting Requirement is included in the CIC Assignment Guidelines, produced by ATIS. According to section 1.4 of that document: At the direction of the NANPA, the access providers and the entities who are assigned CICs will be requested to provide access and usage information to the NANPA, on a semi-annual basis to ensure effective management of the CIC resource. (Holders of codes may respond to the request at their own election). Access provider and entity reports shall be submitted to NANPA no later than January 31 for the period ending December 31, and no later than July 31 for the period ending June 30. It is also referenced in the NANPA Technical Requirements Document, which states at 7.18.6: CIC holders shall provide a usage report to the NANPA per the industry CIC guidelines … The NAS shall be capable of accepting CIC usage reports per guideline requirements on January 31 for the period ending December 31 and no later than July 31 for the period ending June 30. These reports may also be mailed and accepted by the NANPA in paper form.

Finally, according to the NANPA website: If no local exchange carrier reports access or usage for a given CIC, NANPA is obliged to reclaim it. The semi-annual utilization and access reporting mechanism is described at length in the guidelines. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

AUGUST 3: FCC FORM 499-Q, TELECOMMUNICATIONS REPORTING WORKSHEET. All telecommunications common carriers that expect to contribute more than $10,000 to federal Universal Service Fund (USF) support mechanisms must file this quarterly form. (Normally this form is due on August 1, but because August 1 falls on a Saturday this year, the next business day is Monday, August 3.) This filing requirement applies to wireline and wireless carriers (including CMRS, paging, and other commercial service providers), as well as resellers. It also applies to certain Private Mobile Radio Service (PMRS) licensees, such as for-profit paging and messaging, dispatch and two-way mobile radio services. The FCC has modified this form in light of its recent decision to establish interim measures for USF contribution assessments. The form contains revenue information from the prior quarter plus projections for the next quarter. Form 499-Q relates only to USF contributions. It does not relate to the cost recovery mechanisms for the Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) Fund, the North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA), and the shared costs of local number portability (LNP), which are covered in the annual form (Form 499-A) that was due April 1. For-profit private radio service providers that are “de minimis” (those that contribute less than $10,000 per year to the USF) do not have to file the 499-A or 499-Q. However, they must fill out the form and retain the relevant calculations as well as documentation of their contribution base revenues for three years. De minimis telecom carriers must actually file the Form 499-A, but not the 499-Q. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

AUGUST 3: FCC FORM 502, NUMBER UTILIZATION AND FORECAST REPORT: Any wireline or wireless carrier (including CMRS and paging companies) that have received number blocks—including 100, 1,000, or 10,000 number blocks—from the North American Numbering Plan Administrator (NANPA), a Pooling Administrator, or from another carrier, must file Form 502 by August 3. (Normally, this filing would be due August 1, but this year August 1 falls on a Saturday, and agency rules require the filing be submitted the first business day thereafter.) Carriers porting numbers for the purpose of transferring an established customer’s service to another service provider must also report, but the carrier receiving numbers through porting does not (for the reporting period in which the port occurs). Resold services should also be treated like ported numbers, meaning the carrier transferring the resold service to another carrier is required to report those numbers but the carrier receiving such numbers should not report them. New this year is that reporting carriers are required to include their FCC Registration Number (FRN). Reporting carriers file utilization and forecast reports semiannually on or before February 1 for the preceding six-month reporting period ending December 31, and on or before August 1 for the pre- ceding six-month reporting period ending June 30. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

AUGUST 31: COPYRIGHT STATEMENT OF ACCOUNTS. The Copyright Statement of Accounts form plus royalty payment for the first half of calendar year 2009 is due to be filed September 1 at the Library of Congress’ Copyright Office by cable TV service providers. BloostonLaw contact: Gerry Duffy.

SEPTEMBER 1: FCC FORM 477, LOCAL COMPETITION AND BROADBAND REPORTING FORM. In its June 12, 2008 WC Docket No. 07-38 Form 477 Report & Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) to improve data collection, the Commission modified Form 477 to require broadband providers to report the number of broadband connections in service in individual Census Tracts. In order to generate an even more complete picture of broadband adoption in the United States, it proposed additional methods to add to the data reported by Form 477 filers, including a voluntary household self-reporting system, and a recommendation to the Census Bureau that the American Community Survey questionnaire be modified to gather information about broadband availability and subscription in households. To further improve the quality of collected data, the FCC adopted three additional changes to FCC Form 477. First, it now requires broadband service providers to report data on broadband service speed in conjunction with subscriber counts according to new categories for download and upload speeds. These new speed tiers will better identify services that support advanced applications. Second, it amended reporting requirements for mobile wireless broadband providers to require them to report the number of subscribers whose data plans allow them to browse the Internet and access the Internet content of their choice. Finally, it required providers of inter- connected Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service to report subscribership information on Form 477. Then, on reconsideration, it added a requirement that filers include the percentage of residential broadband connections.

Who Must File Form 477: Three types of entities must file this form.

(1) Facilities-based Providers of Broad- band Connections to End User Locations: Entities that are facilities-based providers of broadband connections – which are wired “lines” or wireless “channels” that enable the end user to receive information from and/or send information to the Internet at information transfer rates exceeding 200 kbps in at least one direction – must complete and file the applicable portions of this form for each state in which the entity provides one or more such connections to end user locations. For the purposes of Form 477, an entity is a “facilities-based” provider of broadband connections to end user locations if it owns the portion of the physical facility that terminates at the end user location, if it obtains unbundled network elements (UNEs), special access lines, or other leased facilities that terminate at the end user location and provisions/equips them as broadband, or if it provisions/equips a broadband wireless channel to the end user location over licensed or unlicensed spectrum. Such entities include incumbent and competitive local exchange carriers (LECs), cable system operators, fixed wireless service providers (including “wireless ISPs”), terrestrial mobile wireless service providers, satellite mo- bile wireless service providers, MMDS/BRS providers, electric utilities, municipalities, and other entities. (Such entities do not include equipment suppliers unless the equipment supplier uses the equipment to provision a broadband connection that it offers to the public for sale. Such entities also do not include providers of fixed wireless services (e.g., “Wi-Fi” and other wireless ethernet, or wireless local area network, applications) that only enable local distribution and sharing of a premises broadband facility.)

(2) Providers of Wired or Fixed Wireless Local Telephone Services: Incumbent and competitive LECs must complete and file the applicable portions of the form for each state in which they provide local exchange service to one or more end user customers (which may include “dial-up” ISPs).

(3) Providers of Mobile Telephony Services: Facilities- based providers of mobile telephony services must complete and file the applicable portions of this form for each state in which they serve one or more mobile telephony subscribers. A mobile telephony service is a real-time, two-way switched voice service that is interconnected with the public switched network using an in-network switching facility that enables the provider to reuse frequencies and accomplish seamless handoff of subscriber calls. Obvious examples include cellular, PCS, and “covered” SMR carriers, but may include services provided on other wireless spectrum such as AWS, BRS and 700 MHz if configured to fit the above definition. A mobile telephony service provider is considered “facilities- based” if it serves a subscriber using spectrum for which the entity holds a license, that it manages, or for which it has obtained the right to use via lease or other arrangement (e.g., with a Band Manager). BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

SEPTEMBER 30: FCC FORM 507, UNIVERSAL SERVICE QUARTERLY LINE COUNT UPDATE. Line count updates are required to recalculate a carrier's per line universal service support, and is filed with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC). This information must be submitted on July 31 each year by all rate- of-return incumbent carriers, and on a quarterly basis if a competitive eligible telecommunications carrier (CETC) has initiated service in the rate-of-return incumbent carrier’s service area and reported line count data to USAC in the rate-of-return incumbent carrier’s service area, in order for the incumbent carrier to be eligible to receive Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS). This quarterly filing is due July 31 and covers lines served as of December 31, 2007. Incumbent carriers filing on a quarterly basis must also file on September 30 (for lines served as of March 31, 2008); December 30 (for lines served as of June 30, 2008), and March 31, 2009, for lines served as of September 30, 2008).. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

SEPTEMBER 30: FCC FORM 525, COMPETITIVE CARRIER LINE COUNT QUARTERLY REPORT. Competitive eligible telecommunications carriers (CETCs) are eligible to receive high cost support if they serve lines in an incumbent carrier’s service area, and that incumbent carrier receives high cost support. CETCs are eligible to receive the same per-line support amount received by the incumbent carrier in whose study area the CETC serves lines. Unlike the incumbent carriers, CETCs will use FCC Form 525 to submit their line count data to the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC). This quarterly report must be filed by the last business day of March (for lines served as of September 30 of the previous year); the last business day of July (for lines served as of December 31 of the previous year); the last business day of September (for lines served as of March 31 of the current year); and the last business day of December (for lines served as of June 30 of the current year). CETCs must file the number of working loops served in the service area of an incumbent carrier, disaggregated by the incumbent carrier’s cost zones, if applicable, for High Cost Loop (HCL), Local Switching Support (LSS), Long Term Support (LTS), and Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS). ICLS will also require the loops to be reported by customer class as further described below. For Interstate Access Support (IAS), CETCs must file the number of working loops served in the service area of an incumbent carrier by Unbundled Network Element (UNE) zone and customer class. Working loops provided by CETCs in service areas of non-rural incumbents receiving High Cost Model (HCM) support must be filed by wire center or other methodology as determined by the state regulatory authority. CETCs may choose to complete FCC Form 525 and submit it to USAC, or designate an agent to file the form on its behalf. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

OCTOBER 1: STATE CERTIFICATION OF UNIVERSAL SERVICE SUPPORT. State regulatory commissions must certify by October 1 that eligible rural carriers are using universal service support for the intended purposes. State commissions must file this annual certification with the FCC and the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) stating that all federal high-cost support provided to rural incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs) and competitive eligible telecommunications carriers (CETCs) serving lines in rural ILEC service areas "will be used only for the provision, maintenance, and upgrading of facilities and services for which the support is intended." Failure of a state commission to provide certification will mean that non-certified carriers in that state will not receive high-cost support for the first quarter of 2008. If you have any doubts about your state's status, contact your state commission immediately. Carriers not subject to state jurisdiction must certify directly to the FCC and USAC. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.

OCTOBER 1: LOCAL SWITCHING SUPPORT FORMS. All incumbent eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) serving study areas with 50,000 or fewer access lines must file projections for Local Switching Support (LSS) with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) no later than October 1 in order to receive LSS in calendar year 2006. Average schedule companies must submit USAC Form LSSa, and cost companies must submit USAC Form LSSc. Whereas the National Exchange Carrier Association (NECA) normally files these forms for participants in its Traffic Sensitive Pool, carriers maintaining their own interstate access tariffs for traffic sensitive services (or services that are otherwise not included in the pool) must file the forms themselves. Contact the firm if you need assistance with these forms. BloostonLaw contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, and Mary Sisak.


July 20 – FCC Form 497, Low Income Quarterly Report, is due.

July 20 – Deadline for comments on fixing omission in 4.9 GHz rules (WP Docket No. 07-100).

July 20 – Deadline for reply comments on Alexicon request to change Form 499-A filing deadline to Sept. 1 (WC Docket No. 06-122).

July 21 – Deadline for reply comments on competitive provision of 911 service presented by consolidated arbitration proceedings (WC Docket Nos. 08-33, 08-185).

July 21 – Deadline for reply comments on NOI seeking comment on developing national broadband plan (GN Docket No. 09-51). Extended from July 7.

July 29 – Deadline for comments on Supplemental NOI regarding video competition report (2009 data) (MB Docket No. 07- 269).

July 31 – FCC Form 507, Universal Service Quarterly Line Count Update, is due.

July 31 – FCC Form 525, Competitive Carrier Line Count Quarterly Report, is due.

July 31—Report of extension of credit to Federal candidates is due.

July 31 – International Telecommunications Traffic Reports are due.

July 31 – Carrier Identification Code (CIC) Reports are due.

Aug. 1 – FTC enforcement of Red Flag rules takes effect.

Aug. 3 – FCC Form 499-Q, Telecommunication Reporting Worksheet, is due.

Aug. 3 – FCC Form 502, Number Utilization and Forecast Report, is due.

Aug. 3 – Deadline for comments on FNPRM regarding improving one business day porting interval process (WC Docket No. 07-244).

Aug. 5 – Auction No. 86 (unassigned BRS Auction) Seminar.

Aug. 5 – Auction No. 86 (unassigned BRS Auction) Short-Form Filing Window Opens.

Aug. 14 – Deadline for applications for NTIA, RUS broadband stimulus program funding.

Aug. 14 – Deadline for applications for NTIA mapping grants.

Aug. 18 – Auction No. 86 (unassigned BRS Auction) Short-Form Filing Deadline.

Aug. 19 – Deadline for reply comments on fixing omission in 4.9 GHz rules (WP Docket No. 07-100).

Aug. 21 – Deadline for comments on NTIA’s NOI regarding implementation of CSEA regarding AWS-1 auction relocation issues (Docket No. 0906231085–91085–01).

Aug. 27 – FCC Open Meeting.

This newsletter is not intended to provide legal advice. Those interested in more information should contact the firm.

Source: Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy and Prendergast, LLP For additional information, contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or

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"I do not think that the wireless waves I have discovered will have any practical application."

—H.R. Hertz

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Can't afford to advertise? Maybe it should be, can't afford NOT to advertise. You may be conspicuous by your absence. Your support of The Wireless Messaging Newsletter will be appreciated by all.

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With best regards,

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Newsletter Editor


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Wireless Messaging News
Brad Dye, Editor
P.O. Box 13283
Springfield, IL 62791 USA

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I have also started a Facebook Group left arrow associated with this newsletter. It is an open group and you are welcome to join. Just click on the link above.

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